Hi all - I just made a great discovery. Up until lately I have been
harvesting the ralleballs from old spray cans for use in bottled
paints. Normally, this entailed cutting the can with a hacksaw blade
and then cutting about halfway through the can. Then I would deform
the can and pour the ball and any residual paint onto a folded paper
towel and move the ball to a cleaner towel for wiping. Then I'd rinse
the ball in a jar of turps or mineral spirits to clean it off before
putting it in a fresh bottle of paint.
Because the weather is so crappy now (low 20s, windy resulting in a
severe wind chill and some snow), I am forced to either do this in the
garage or wait until Spring (and I already had 21 cans of paint to
harvest now). So instead of using the hacksaw, I got a 1/8" drill bit
and mounted it in my cordless drill (Wal-Mart special for $5.00) and
slowly drilled a hole.
I found that by drilling slowly, I could bleed off propellant very
slowly and the can would stay still enough to keep much paint from
gysering out. By putting the can in my vise, I also can drill with one
hand and hald a rag in my other hand if the damn thing DOES start
gysering up to plug it. Then I opened the hole with an old needle-
nosed pliers so I could remove the ball.
Last night I found myself with an old can of Testors Magnesium
Metalizer about half full and throughly plugged. I did the harvesting
and after the propellant streamed out, I took the can from the vise
and opened the hole a bit and put it over a clean, empty Tamiya bottle
and decanted the usable paint. Then I was able to go in and harvest
the rattleball, which I put directly into the harvested paint.
The important thing is I was able to salvage the paint without making
a mess (oh yeah, had THAT happen before with the saw).
One other oddball thing I discovered; Testors uses one metal ball
bearing, about 1/4" diameter. Tamiya uses two marbles (so far all
cat's eye) that are between 3/8" and 1/2" diameter per can.
- posted 12 years ago